Community Technology Assessments

Community Technology
Why Do Assessments?
• “The long term development of a
community rests on its ability to uncover
and build on the strengths and assets of
its people, institutions, and informational
organizations.” (Beaulieu 2002)
• Look for strengths, identify all the positive
qualities of your community
• Identify gaps
• Help communities realize there may be
multiple ways to achieve goals
Connecting Community
• Quick start assessments
• Community readiness
• Capability
• Individual
• Organizational
• Infrastructure
Community Readiness
• Level of cooperation and collaboration
• Potential leadership team members
• Potential partner organizations
• Existing digital development projects
Leadership Team
Member Worksheet
• Leaders (formal and non-formal)
• Technology experts
Digital Development
• Organization capability to use digital tools
• Individual capability to use digital tools
• Digital infrastructure
• Internet
• Organizational
Types of Assessments
• What’s there??? First step is to agree what
“connected community” means
• Where are the gaps?
• Needs assessment
• Community assets (mapping)
• Focus
• Technology
• Formal organizations
• Individuals
More choices
• Online
• Formal
• Informal
• Non-Profit
• Business
• Government
• Access to
• Capacity
• How is it being
• Health issues
• Economic
• School success
• Family issues
• Early childhood
More choices
• Business and Industry
• K-12
• Healthcare
• Libraries
• Higher Education
• Community-Based Organizations
• Government
• Tourism, Recreation and Parks
• Agriculture
Two purposes
• What’s available? Network, appliances
• How it’s being used? In segments and
across the community
Do we need to hire a consultant?
What do we know?
What do we still need to know?
How will we collect additional information?
Who and what will we ask?
Who will collect the data?
How will we compile & analyze the data?
How will we report our findings?
Guiding Principles
• Partnership’s vision statement should guide the
• Assessment should focus on specific topics
• Assessment is an ongoing process
• Views the community from multiple
• Takes an in-depth look at diversity within a
• Coordinator can facilitate information gathering
by many participants
Successful Community
• Understand the current situation first
• Define a vision of the future
• Allow questions to drive the assessment
• Address issues that stakeholders believe
are important
• Communicate information back to
Now what?
• Completing the assessment is only the
• An assessment is the means to achieve
your vision
Connecting Rural Communities
Connecting Rural Communities
Southern Rural Development Center